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Capability review: Department of Employment


The Australian Public Service Commission (APSC) has undertaken 24 capability reviews of Australian Public Service (APS) agencies. The reviews identify organisational strengths and areas for improvement and are designed to help lift the productivity of individual agencies and the APS as a whole.

I thank the members of the Department of Employment for their professional and enthusiastic engagement at all stages of the review process. Staff who participated in interviews and workshops displayed great passion and commitment for their work and provided valuable insights into the department's capability.

I would also like to thank Ms Rachel Hunter, the chair of the review team, other senior members of the team, Ms Akiko Jackson and Mr Tony Sheehan, and the staff from the APSC who supported them.

John Lloyd PSM

Australian Public Service Commissioner

1 About the review

A capability review is a forward-looking, organisational review that assesses an agency's ability to meet future objectives and challenges.

This review focuses on leadership, strategy and delivery capabilities in the Department of Employment (Employment). It highlights the department's management strengths and improvement opportunities using the model set out in Figure 1. A set of 39 questions is used to guide the assessment of each of the 10 elements of the model.

Capability reviews are designed to be relatively short and take a high-level view of the strategic operations of a department or agency. This review is primarily informed by consultation with Ministers' offices, senior leaders and external stakeholders. It also considers the views of staff who attended a series of workshops and round-table discussions. External stakeholders interviewed include other Australian Government departments, state and territory government departments, private sector companies, peak bodies and interest groups.

Functions undertaken by Employment were carried out before September 2013 by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) which was part of the pilot programme of capability reviews in late 2011. In response to the pilot review, DEEWR concluded it needed to further develop its policy and organisational stewardship capabilities as well as improve its stakeholder engagement approaches.

Figure 1 – Model of capability

Last reviewed: 
29 March 2018